Daycare Overfeeding Children

20 Replies
_E_ - June 16

Hi... I used to be on this site on the pregancy forums (known as ~E~). My son just turned 9 months old. I just learned from daycare today that the daycare feeds him twice as much solids as I have been. The lady revealed to me today that she feeds him twice as much as what she puts on the sheet....she claims he is hungry and eats two jars of baby food per meal. My son has been a good eater from 2 days old... once he started daycare (2 months ago)...he did not want the bottle much. At first he would take it just fine w/ me...and the daycare said he wasn't drinking much milk but ate solids just fine. Couple weeks later, he refused the bottle frequently with me too. I told the daycare lady that it was more important for me that he drink the formula rather than eat solids. Anyway, the lady told me today that she gives him 2 jars of baby food per meal.. (2 lunch veggies/meat, and 2 fruites)...this is in addition to 2 servings of cereal...plust whatever formula he drinks....she had always puts on the sheet that she had 1 veggie, 1 fruit, and cereal twice (one in the morning and once in the evening). I did not like the fact that she had lied to me all this time about how much he ate...he was eating twice as much as what she was letting me know. It all makes sense now...because he refuses dinner....even starts crying as soon as I get the jar out for dinner. It was surprising because he had always been a good eater... I just thought that since he was getting older, he was not very interested in eating....but now I think that she may be overfeeding him. Needles to say, I don't trust I am taking my son out of the daycare. If my son was hungry and needed to eat more, why didn't she just tell me so. Instead, she took it upon heself to go purchase extra baby food, feed him, and then lie to me about it. It all seemed strange to me... why wouldn't she just tell me that he is still hungry and I should bring more food. She also implied that it is the same with the other kids too. I find it hard to believe that all the kids( (6) are being fed too little by their parents, and that she needs to double the feedings. I think that she may be obsessing with feeding children. My son used to like eating, now he cries and shuts his mouth as tight as he can unless he is really hungry. I apologize for the long email, this just happened today and I am just so confused coz I have never heard of a childcare provider taking it upon herself to buy a child jars of baby food and feed him double the amount that was brough by the parent. Has anyone ever heard of this OR do I just seem paranoid?? I just think it is really strange for her to LIE about him eating so much. I could see why someone would like if the child is not being fed enough.... but why would someone lie about feeding them MORE??? unless there is something to lie about and she is forcing him to eat more. Anway, usually when people lie about something, there is something to I am really just scared about what else she doing to my baby? Has anyone heart or experienced anything like this with daycare/babysitter? Has anyone heart of an 8 month old eating 2 4oz jars per meal instead of one...???? Please please share some thoughts. Thanks.


_E_ - June 16

Also, my son just turned 9 months old and has not crawled at all yet. I know that kids develop differently, so I didn't worry too much about it. Prior to that, he did all the steps early or on time....and he moves his legs a lot and is extremely strong and has always been...he is pretty active...but he just is not interested in crawling. Is their any corelation to overfeed and crawling??


LisaB - June 16

What kind of day care is it? Is it in a private home or state mandated? If you feel something is wrong go with your gut. I would contact the other parents. It seems very odd to me. Good luck.


YC - June 16

Hi E. I am sorry you had this experience. It is hard enought trusting our precious little ones with daycare and then to find out that you have been lied to really sucks. I haven't experienced this exactly but we use a private sitter...a friend of the family. She loves are daughter like one of her own but if she had it her way she would feed her much more than I do. She made several comments about starting solids early but we were not ready. I finally had to sort of put my foot down and say we will feed when WE think she is ready. Our dd is now on solids snd I take a specific amount of food over and make it VERY clear that this is all I want her to eat. She understands now. That is so awful that this sitter would go behind your back and buy more food on her own. I am sure she thought she was doing the right thing but that is not right. I would ask the ped but I think that if you get him back on the feeding schedule and amounts YOU think is right it probably wont take long for him to adjust. I wish you the best of luck. Have you found another sitter?


_E_ - June 17

Hi guys...thank you for your is comforting. Lisa: I was thinking of contacting the other parents...mainly because they may not realize what is going on. However, I do not have any of their their any way for me to find out or is that personal? The daycare is in a private home...but she is liscensed but it is in her bas____nt. YC: She does seem to be very caring and loving when I am around. So, I think that she probably feels that the more you feed the baby, the better you are taking care of them. If my son is more hungry and wants to eat more, that is ok with me.... why she hid it and did it behing my back...questions to me that he wants to eat that much. He does just fine on the weekends the way I feed him (other than not drinking as much milk as I want him to)....and he eats dinner on the weekends without putting up a big fight. She told about the extra foods yesterday morning. I didn't get mad or show any discomfort...just surprise that he is eating that much...I wanted her to feel comfortable to let as much info that I can really know what is going on. She also mentioned a name of another lady working there that I had not heard of. I knew of one helper and just started a new one...I knew of those two. Apparently, there was someone else that has been there during the day...she had never mentioned that to me before. I wanted to say, so my son is being taken care of someone who I don't even know about...but I held my mouth. In any case, that evening when I went to pick him up, she said she dipped him in water. I thought to myself...strange...but I try not to offend someone that is taking care of my son. So, I asked if he made a mess or something. She said no, he was just sticky.... hmmm. I keep my son clean... if he was sticky, it was due to the sun screan or heat (which is possible)...but I don't feel that it is her responsbility to bath him....and I would not have wanted daycare to bath him. I try not to overreact or appear upset. I could tell my son's hair had been wet. My son's hair is curly and it looks different after a bath...and SHE doesn't know how I comb it. I knew his hair looked like it does after a bath. So, I asked her if she got his hair wet....and she said no... LIAR! I have no idea why she would want to unnecesarily bathe my son.... if he did get messy (which he can) would be fine to wipe him down with a wet towel or something...but no need to can wait till I take him home....and to think she bathed him without finding out if I am okay with just seems like she disregards my rights as his parent and just thinks she can make what decisions she wants for him. My son will be watched my my mom now. My mom had watched him from 6 months (when I went to work)...but she had some unexpected hospitalization... so I just felt it was best to keep him in daycare until I knew she was doing ok... she has been doing ok, but I was going to wait till he turned one...but now, it is either take him to my mom or take him to another daycare. Since my mom seems to be ok, I asked my mom and she is looking forward to watching her grandson again... I am not taking him back to that lady even one more day.


HannahBaby - June 17

My daughter always has eaten 2 jars, since she was about 6 months. She would have an 8oz bottle, a jar of fruit and and jar of veggies. I think its strange that she would lie to you and go out and buy the food on her own though.....


LisaB - June 17

I am surprised more moms haven't responded to this upset. I think it is suspect that she "hides" things from you. If she lies about little things what else is she lying about? She is supposed to take care of your child how you tell her not by what she thinks that is why she gets paid. I don't know if their is a way you can get info on the other parents but I would think with her being licensed some one would. I am glad your mom can watch him. It sounds like no harm done to your son even if she was over feeding him you can correct it. I would call my ped and tell them the story see what they say. I don't think I could walk way from that without doing something to alert the other parents.


Rabbits07 - June 17

It all sounds strange to me, too. Some people do obsess about feeding. My dh's aunt used to shove a spoonful of food in her babies' mouths when they were newborns and put a pacifier in behind it so they would swallow it. By the time they were teens they were HUGE. I'm of the mindset that if it was all harmless why lie? You said your son used to like eating, but now shuts his mouth and cries unless really hungry.....that sounds to me like some force feeding MAY have went on, but it's really hard to say since he can't talk. I think you certainly did right by taking him out of her care. I would make every effort to inform the other parents, also.


_E_ - June 17

Thank you guys very much for responding. I will look into whether I can find out contact info for the other parents. My mom told me to just tell her that my mom is better and will be taking care of him. I told my mom that I will tell her that...but I will also let her know that her being dishonest about what is going on with my son was not ok w/ me...and that trust is a very important thing when u leave your child in the care of a stranger. My mom said don't go to fight about it... I don't think it is fighting...and I won't be offensive...but I do want to try to send her a clear message...for the reason that I would not want her to do this to other children... me removing my son removes him from the problem....but I would not want any child or parent to be handled that way. By the way, today my son drank a lot of milk...did not want much solids...and I did not force or bribe seems as though he is almost learning to dislike the solids and go for the milk (probably since that was not forced). I will just give him what he wants to eat and not give him what he does not want to eat... to let him know that it is ok for him to decide what he want and needs to eat...his body will guide him. I do feel bad because last week I would try to play games and get him to finish his dinner...I did not know that he was eating all that food during the day. This week, he just refused it from the start of opening the jar, I didn't feel right about it...and decided he really did not want it and just let it be that way. After finding what I found out yesterday, I am so glad I did not try to get him to eat when he didn't want to...but I do feel bad about bribing him to finish off the jar last week. I think he will be fine too! I just hope she didn't do anything really really sick to him...the fact that she decided she can do whatever SHE feels like to him without my knowledge is spooky... Thank you guys for your support... atleast I am not alone.


skn331 - June 17

I thought I might give you a different view of things as I am a home daycare provider. I take care of 6 children and the youngest one is currently 11 months, although I began caring for him when he was 4 months. (I am also pregnant by the way, due in three weeks, but currently have no children of my own) When something comes up about food, or the occasional bath (when they need it) I generally dont bother the parents with the information. If they ask, I will obviously tell them what goes on during the day, but mostly they just care if their baby was happy, slept and ate well and what activities did we do. I have given a few baths..... Once we were playing outside after it rained and the 11 month old found a puddle. He was having so much fin, I let him play in it and gave him a quick bath when we got back inside. I certainly didnt want him to sit with puddle water on his skin all day until his mom could bathe him at home. I told her about it when she picked him up. I think she would have been upset to pick up a baby that was that dirty. I wouldnt have been taking very good care of him to let him stay that dirty all day long. As far as the feeding goes.... the day care provider definately should not have lied to you...however, I have also bought extra food to feed the babies. I only have one mom that brings food, I provide the food to everyone else. I think communication is the key to getting your baby happy and well fed. I am sure she didnt think that giving him an extra jar of food was a big deal. She was probably just trying to make sure he was full. (On a side note, I dont think 2 jars of food for a 9 month old is too much) I know I am going to be so possessive and controlling about what is done to my son after he is born, but I wanted to point out that your sitter sounds like she had his best interests at heart. She just didnt think it was necessary to tell you everything. I dont tell my parents everything. And its not because I am hiding something, I just dont feel like a lot of things are important. Its just life, what happens in our day. I do take care of their children for an average of 50 hours a week. I know they are not "mine", but I do love them and want the best for them. I know I am rambling now, I just wanted to point out a different side to the situation.


SonyaM - June 17

That is one of the weirdest stories I have ever heard. Totally illegal and just strange. She sounds creepy to me. I am so glad that you went with your gut and that your aren't going to take him back there ever. I think you should tell her your concerns, not so she can justify but so she is aware that she is not getting away with it. I also think you must report this to the state. As far as notifying other paretns, that will be difficult. Their information is confidential but one way to do it is to notify the local media. Our news channels here (San Antonio) have "investigative stories" where they will check into things for people as well as notify the public of things such as this. This would be a way to get the information out to the public and HOPE the parents are watching or hear about it. I know it is extreme, but it works. Good luck to you and your little one.


_E_ - June 17

skn331: thanks for the different perspective. I understand the concept of having back up food... if it was once or twice it is no big deal...but if she is going shopping for baby food on a regular basis and feeding it to him on a regular basis, I need to know...with an infant, it is important to know how much your baby is eating... when I take him to the doctor's, the doctor asks me... if she doesn't give me accurate info, then I can't provide his doctor with accurate info. Plus, since she is LISCENSED she fills out a sheet EVERYDAY with what he ate and when among other things... and she consistently has minimized his eatings on those sheets.... In general, babies know when they need food and when it is enough, their bodies guide them. Unless the are seriously malnuritioned, no intervention needs to take place.... the baby will cry to eat more, and push the food away when it is enough. There is no need to overfeed...If you overfeed, you teach the baby to ignore the cues that his/her body gives...therefore, contributing to obesity later in life... they will just eat and eat ignoring that they are full OR they learn to hate eating...since it became something they HAD to do even when they didn't WANT/NEED to. Also, babies have food allergies, I NEVER take a jar of food to the daycare that I have not already given to him at hom and know that he is not allergic to. When she goes out and buys her own baby food, I KNOW she does not just buy the ones I bring, so she is introducing my child to something I am unaware of which he could have a reaction to after getting home, but I would never even know what he could be having a reaction to...but what do I need to know anything for...I AM JUST HIS MOTHER and she she is the daycare provider and as long as she knows that is all that matters...right?! LEAVING YOUR CHILD IN THE CARE OF SOMEONE ELSE IS A HUGE HUGE DECISION (MOST OF US DO IT BECAUSE WE HAVE TO WORK TO PROVIDE FOR OUR FAMILY), IT IS VERY IMPORTANT FOR THE CAREGIVER TO RECOGNIZE THAT THEY ARE NOT THE PARENT AND THAT THE PARENT SHOULD BE KEPT INFORMED WITH ACCURATE COMMUNICATION AND TRUST IS ESTABLISHED AND MAINTAINED!!!! Now, I don't know what kind of center you operate or how much you get paid. WHEN I PAY $900 A MONTH FOR MY SON TO BE WATCHED BY SOMEONE DURING THE DAY, I EXPECT PROPER AND HONEST COMMUNICATION ABOUT ANY CHANGES IN MY SON'S DAY AND IF THE CAREGIVER AND I HAVE A DIFFERENCE OF OPINION ON WHAT SHOULD OR SHOULD NOT BE DONE TO MY CHILD, THEN I AM THE DECISIONMAKER AND THE CAREGIVER HAS TO COMPLY OR TERMINATE MY SON DUE TO HER INABILITY TO COMPLY FOR WHATEVER REASON. IT IS NOT HER DECISION, IT IS MINE AND IF SHE THINKS I AM MAKING A HUGELY WRONG DECISION AND NEGLECTING MY SON BY STARVING HIM, THEN SHE NEEDS TO REPORT ME TO CHILD SERVICES...IF NOT, IT IS NOT HER BUSINESS AND SHE NEEDS TO RESPECT ME AS THE PARENT OF THE CHILD!!!!! How dirty can a 9 month old who is not moving around on his own get??? Like I said I asked her if he made a mess, she said no.... I think that she just did it for her pleasure, not for his need. If an infant did get dirty, wiping him down with a wet towel is the way to go unless the parent has expicity given you PERMISSION to bathe their child... there is no need to immerse an infant without consent... water could get in his nose, he could get a ear infection, he could drown... I WOULD NOT WANT ANY DAYCARE TO BATHE MY CHILD UNLESS I KNOW FOR A FACT THAT THEY WILL CARFULLY BATHE MY CHILD (W/OUT ATTENDING TO 6 OTHER KIDS) ...I WILL NEVER FEEL THAT SECURE WITH A DAYCARE PROVIDER, I WOULD MUCH RATHER PICK UP A NOT-SO-CLEAN CHILD THAN HAVE SOMEONE THAT I DON'T REALLY KNOW IMMERSE MY CHILD IN WATER. Just for the record, my mom was a babysitter for 17 years and she thinks it is not right!!! With all the children she took care of, she would always tell the parents in the beginning that bathing the child was the parent's responsibility...she told them she was not comfortable with that. Even after raising 2 kids (myself and my sister), when I had my son, my mom watched me and how I bathe MY SON before ever giving him a bath even though she is his grandmother. In the 17 yrs she was a babysitter, SHE HAS NEVER BATHED A CHILD so I am sure IT IS NOT NECESSARY no matter how messy they get, there is no reason why wiping them clean with a wet towel is not sufficient to get them clean enough to look presentable. YOU SHOULD NEVER DO SOMETHING LIKE BATHE A CHILD without the parent's PERMISSION, a parent can probably SUE a childcare provider for doing something such as immersing a child in water WITHOUT PERMISSION.... for God's sakes, the child coud die...and u take it upon yourself to make a decision liek that without consent. All I am signing up is for her to take care of my child (feed him, change him for the most part, and of course put him to sleep when needed and not neglect him and attend to him lovingly and caringly)...SHE HAS NO PERMISSION TO DO ANYTHING ELSE!!!! IT IS NOT HER RIGHT!! If you left a diamon necklace in someone's possession WITH PAY and they decided to get it polished by dipping it in some bleach...would you be MAD???... MY CHILD IS MY MOST PRICED is not your place as the childcare provider to make decisons for him UNLESSS YOU KNOW IT IS OKAY... I would much rather the provider call me at work and ASK IF IT IS OKAY AND I WILL LET HER KNOW AND SHE SHOULD COMPLY or like I said she HAS DONE HER JOB WRONG AND SHE CAN BE SUED....we are dealing with a CHILD not an inanimate object!!!! Just because a child is too young to defend himself does not mean he should be treated like an object...that is why the child who cannot fend for himself has a parent (TO PROTECT HIM)...and if the parent is irresponsible and not taking proper care of his/her child, child services should be involved. Otherwise, all it is is a different of opinion and the paid employee needs to respect and abide by the rules of her employer!!!!!


galvquodi - June 18

Hi, It is very worrisome that she lied about it... I would report her to the state immediately and is you befriended another parent whose child go thre, I would explain the situation and hope the word goes around....


Narcissus - June 18

Hi _E_ (from another former E) - I agree with you that formula is more important than solids for an 8-9 month old. I only fed my son one jar per day when he was that age. I wanted him to get as much DHA/ARA as possible and the jarred veggie/fruits did not provide that. It's wise to take him out of that daycare bc if she is lying about something like this, who knows what else she feels inclined to hide. She may have a problem with lying in general. She should be honoring the parents wishes with regards to how she cares for the children in her daycare. If your son was hungry and one jar was not satisfying him, she should have discussed the matter with you to see how you would like her to handle the situation. I wanted to tell you about a great source of Omega 3 fatty acids that can be added to your son's baby food, to increase its nutritional value. I buy Organic Flax Seed Oil (WalMart $8 - Whole Foods $14) and I add 1 tsp to my son's yogurt each day and it satisfies the daily requirement. It's just an FYI if you find that your son needs more jarred food than you would like, given that it's less nutritious than formula. I hope that all goes well with the situation, and that you can find someone you can trust.


Nick - June 18

I think I would move my son as well. You need to be able to trust the people that you are leaving your baby with all day. My day care does whatever I ask and if they think it should be done differently they will talk to me about it and in the end it is still my decision. My son is almost 10 months and has been eating 2 jars of baby food at each meal. He is 19 1/2 pounds.


skn331 - June 18

you've obviously got some guilt issues about leaving him and some serious control issues. I agree with you about lying on the form about the food (I dont fill out forms and yes I AM licensed) but seriously... let it go? she didnt harm your son, she fed him too much!! You are acting like she's been abusing him. As for the bath, maybe another child vomitted on him and she didnt want to tell you.... if she takes care of children for a living I am sure she knows how to give a baby a bath! You should have told her from the begining that you would prefer her not to EVER bathe him, regardless of the circ_mstances.


skn331 - June 18

one more thing... she is NOT your employee. You are using her services. Its like going to a restruant. You pay them them to offer the service they provide. You dont always get to dictate what they do and how they do it. If you dont like the services, dont go there. AND.. you could NOT sue her for giving your child a bath. That is the MOST ridiculous idea I have EVER heard!!!!!



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